Stocks quoted in this article:
This morning's retail sales and Empire State manufacturing index were pretty good overall, but those European countries still won't leave us alone. The May NAHB housing market index was also better than expected, and gave a little boost to a market that has been weighed down by news related to Greek elections and worries about the country potentially leaving the euro zone. Overall, there is just a lot of uncertainty related to Europe, and uncertainty translates to nervousness -- which can quickly morph into selling.
Some levels I am looking to hold on the major equity indexes are the 1,333-1,340 area on the S&P 500 Index (SPX) and the 780-790 area on the Russell 2000 Index (RUT). The 1,333 level marks double the March 2009 low of 666, and 1,340 coincides with a key former resistance area on the SPX back in 2011. With respect to the small caps, they are currently trading near some key technical levels that I touched on in a blog yesterday.
A few sectors that seem to be holding up well include homebuilding stocks and regional banks. Some of the larger multi-national banks have a little more uncertainty surrounding them, and the recent JPMorgan Chase (JPM) debacle hasn't done anything to help their cause. Until I see something change technically, I would stay away from those bigger banks.